My first thought was, oh well, we probably won't be making it to Max Patch today. I started to go for the manual when all at once about 10 guys from the car behind us and three other cars got out to help us. It turns out they were all traveling together. There were from Texas and visiting. They all started speaking a different language, which I couldn't identify. Within 10 minutes, they had the flat changed and we were on our way. That gets the "flat tire" part of the post title.
There is a long loop and short loop to the top. There is is also a straight path right up the hill. We decided to take the loop to see the scenery along the way. It was beautiful at the top, windy, but a 360 degree view of the mountains. I could see a lake, which I think must be Douglas.
All at once one of men told the group to get in a circle that they were going to play a game. He called one of the ladies to come to the center. Then he called one of the men to come to the center. The young man then got on one knee and told the young lady to turn around and say "open sesame" and when she did, he pulled out a ring and asked her to marry him.
Now on the other side of the bald there were a group of people gathered like in a church. I had seen a young lady get out of a car when we parked that looked like she was a little overdressed, beautiful hair and makeup but not what one usually wears when hiking. It didn't take me long to realize that this was a wedding. I didn't take any pictures, since there was a professional photographer there.
We finished our hike on down the mountain on the long loop. This part of the trail is actually part of the Appalachian trail and there were several groups of people with backpacks. We passed an older man on the way down with a large backpack. We talked briefly and learned that he was about 2 miles away from the shelter where was going to camp for the night. We went on for less then 5 minutes when we saw a black case and folder papers. We looked at them, they had no name, but they were a detailed map and printed instructions. We figured it must belong to the man we just passed since they didn't show any signs of weather. We didn't know what to do. Robert decided that he could try to catch him. I knew I couldn't catch him, but Robert is in pretty good shape. So he volunteered to go and find him and then take the short, straight path down from the bald. We would meet him at the car. This is the "Good Deed" part. He actually caught up with the man, just before he went out of sight into the forest. He was grateful for the map which he would have literally been "lost" without.
We traveled back down the mountain, 8.1 miles. It took about 40 minutes. By this time it was about 6:30 so we decided to eat supper in Newport. We ate at this very interesting, but well-known for its steak restaurant, called the Grease Rack. It used to be a auto garage.
So we had a very good day. We were amazed by God's care, the kindness of strangers, the wonder of human love, and God's beautiful world. The verse that comes through my memory as I write this story of this very special day is 1 Peter 5:7, Cast all you anxiety on him because he cares for you.
Below are some more pictures I took at the top of Max Patch.